VMware E1000 Nic Drivers, WinPE, and Adding NIC Drivers with DISM

DISM.exe is a new command line tool included in the Windows Automated Installation Kit (Windows AIK) 2.0. You can use DISM to service Windows images, both WIM and VHD files. This is a useful tool that can be used to add/remove device drivers, OS Packages, hotfixes, etc.

I recently came across an occurrence where I needed to add VMWare NIC drivers to my WinPE image. The new Windows 7 WAIK no longer has the PEIMG tool, which was used with the WAIK’s predecessor to inject drivers into the boot image. We now use the DISM.

When PXE booting to my VM, I realized my WinPE did not have the correct NIC drivers installed.

DISM Tool Notes

  • Multiple drivers can be added on one command line if you specify a folder instead of an .inf file.  Use the /recurse option.
  • The command to inject drivers into WinPE w/ DISM are demonstrated below:
  • To install an unsigned driver, use the /ForceUnsigned to override the requirement that drivers installed on x64 based computers must have a digital signature.
  • Dism.exe /unmount-WIM /MountDir:C:\Mount /Commit  (Note – The /commit option is very important!)

Here is what the WinPE Image will look like after the NIC drivers are injected with DISM.

For those using the new VMWare NIC model e1000, WinPE 2.1 supports the new VMWare NIC model e1000. It is recommended to use this NIC Model with your virtual machine. http://h18000.www1.hp.com/products/servers/management/rdp/knowledgebase/00000192.html

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